Al Sadd

Photo by Barrington Coombs/Getty Images

Xavi Hernandez to coach Qatari champion Al-Sadd

Leave a comment

DOHA, Qatar (AP) Barcelona great Xavi Hernandez will begin his coaching career with Qatari club Al-Sadd.

Al-Sadd says Xavi is taking charge of the team he helped become Qatari league champion this season.

[ MORE: Arsenal-Chelsea preview ]

The 39-year-old midfielder played four seasons with Al-Sadd after a storied 17-year career with Barcelona.

Xavi played a club record 767 games for Barcelona and helped the club win four Champions Leagues and eight Spanish leagues. He also played in Spain’s title-winning teams at the 2010 World Cup and 2008 and 2012 European Championships.

Al-Sadd says Xavi’s squad will gather in Barcelona in July for a pre-season training camp in the Catalonia region.

More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/apf-Soccer and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

WATCH: Ex-Barcelona midfielder Xavi scores a wonderful free-kick on debut for Qatari club

2 Comments

Xavi, who left Barcelona after 16 seasons with the Catalan club, started his career in Qatar with a bang as he scored a nifty free-kick in a 2-1 loss for his new club Al Sadd.

The 35-year-old played in his first match for his new club in a preseason friendly as the teams warm up for the upcoming top flight campaign. Al Sadd finished second last season, five points behind Lekhwiya for the championship.

Leaving Barcelona on a free transfer this summer after the expiration of his contract, Xavi signed a three-year deal with Al Sadd that is reportedly worth around $11.7 million per season.

The Qatari Stars League begins competitive play on September 11.